Monday, April 4, 2011

Less Research = More Motion

When it comes to technology research-and-development spending it appears less equals more.

As a % of sales, Microsoft puts 14% toward R&D expenditures.

Apple puts a mere 2.7% toward R&D.

Here's a breakdown of R&D expenses at some of the larger tech companies:

Microsoft (MSFT)
R&D Spend = $ 8.7 billion , R&D as % of Sales = 14%
Nokia (NOK)
$ 8.26 billion, 13.8%
Research in Motion (RIMM)
$ 1.35 billion, 6.78%
Apple (AAPL)
$ 1.78 billion, 2.7%

From this Wall Street Journal article: For RIM, Less Research Could Mean More Motion

RIM lost global smartphone market share dropping to 16.3% in 2010 from 19.7% in 2009.

Not surprisingly, a similar trend exists at Nokia.

Apple is strengthened by focus. Whether the iPhone or its other products, Apple generally limits itself to one release per year and has comparatively fewer models.

In contrast, RIM will often release 4-5 new models each year. The article points out there are seven BlackBerry models are for sale in the United States with RIM often making multiple versions (ie. four different BlackBerry Bolds).


Long positions in MSFT and AAPL

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